Through the Palette's Eye exhibit goes to CCP
Press Release - After a year-long university tour, “Through the Palette’s Eye” — an exhibition of paintings on palettes by Filipino artists — goes to the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Bulwagang Juan Luna (Main Gallery).
The exhibit, featuring the unique collection of Singapore-based Filipino art lovers Rico and Melannie Hizon that celebrates the ultimate artist’s icon — the palette — will open on March 23, Friday, and run until May 6, 2007. The show is co-presented by the CCP, Art Sentral Manila and Good News Pilipinas, and is sponsored by AyalaLand, PLDT, Mercedes-Benz, Figaro, CB Richard Ellis, Unilever and 1st Life Insurance Corporation.
Palettes of various shapes and sizes bear a remarkably wide range of artistic styles as executed by both established and upcoming talents. National Artist Benedicto Cabrera (Bencab) recreated his favorite image Sabel, while other Filipino masters depicted their trademark themes — Anita Magsaysay-Ho and her barrio women, Malang and his woman vendor, Romulo Olazo and the kasuy (cashew), Manuel Baldemor and his folksy townscape, Norma Belleza and her rural characters and Angel Cacnio and the sabong (cockfight).
Abstracts were made by Lao Lianben, the late Pacita Abad, Raul Isidro, Soler, Joe Datuin and Roland Bay-an. Figurative expression was done by the likes of Lydia Velasco, Emmanuel Garibay and Kiko Escora and social realism by Charlie Co and Nunelucio Alvarado. Virgilio Pandy Aviado made a wood etching, while Lizanne Uychaco did a sample of her favored feng shui art.
Sculptural pieces have also been created by Gerry Leonardo, Sajid Imao, Eng Chan and Ige Ramos.
Completing the roster of participating artists are: Hermes Alegre, Wilfredo Alicdan, Marcel Antonio, Allan Jay Balisi, Yveese Belen, Elmer Borlongan, Froilan Calayag, Joey Cobcobo, Convocar, Daniel Coquilla, Emmanuel Cordova, Marc Vincent Cosico, Mario de Rivera, Patrick de Veyra, Alfredo Esquillo Jr., Karen Flores, Romeo Forbes, James Gabito, Rowena Gaborni, Waling Waling Gorospe, Gregory Raymond Halili; Ryan Jara, Geraldine Javier, Winner Jumalon, Mark Justiniani, Lao Lianben, Joy Mallari, Ferdie Montemayor, Justin Nuyda, Lynyrd Paras, Mario Parial, Ryan Rubio, Jose Tence Ruiz, Don Salubayba, Bin Samonte, Jose John Santos III, Stevesantos, Christian Tamondong, Sherwin Tan, CJ Tañedo, Rodel Tapaya, Claude Tayag, Ofelia Gelvezon Tequi, Rishab Tibon, Wire Tuazon, Clairelynn Uy, Olan Ventura and Pam Yan Santos.
There are now over 70 works in the collection, but the number continues to grow as the Hizon couple tap selected artists to execute works using palettes.
As a special feature for the CCP exhibit, 24 students of the Philippine High School for the Arts in Makiling were invited to make paintings on oval palettes measuring 8 x 11 inches. The exercise, done as part of their visual arts class, challenged the young students to work with the limited and unusual space, and even the palette's hole.
Through the Palette's Eye” at the CCP also includes a segment featuring palette trivia and palette art events in other countries, based on research by exhibit curators Susan A. de Guzman and Giselle P. Kasilag. In the United States, for example, the state of Vermont recently held a massive community arts project wherein 7,000 Vermont maple palettes and 30,000 die-cut paper palettes were distributed to participants statewide. In Lebanon, the artist Joseph Matar has been making oil paintings on palettes that he himself makes and which are sold internationally; he has also been writing his meditations about the palettes and how they have inspired him to create art.
The Hizon collection started after the couple discovered during their travels that palettes came in various shapes and sizes. The couple started buying these wooden palettes in countries that they visited with the thought of inviting Filipino artists of their choice to render paintings on them.
“We started our palette art journey in 2003, with the very first work made by no less than our dear friend Bencab. Since then, we’ve gotten other artists interested in it and today, the collection continues to expand,” relates Rico Hizon, a business anchorman with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).
“Through the Palette’s Eye” was first presented at the Crucible Gallery in September 2005. For its campus tour last year, it was hosted by the De La Salle University Museum, the University of the Philippine Jorge B. Vargas Museum, the University of Santo Tomas Museum of Arts and Sciences and the Enderun Colleges.
The CCP Main Gallery is located at the 3rd level of the CCP Main Building along Roxas Boulevard. Gallery hours are from 10am to 6pm, Tuesdays to Sundays, with a Holy Week break April 2-9. Admission is free. For inquiries, call the CCP Visual Arts Unit at 8323702, or text 0917-8804754 or 0915-8815218.
Palette and poetry
Joseph Matar was only ten years old when, he says, “the magic world of colour was first revealed to me”. Since then, the Lebanese artist has produced an immense output of paintings that has been sold internationally.
We had quite a successful opening night last March 23 for the Through the Palette's Eye exhibition! So many people came and they eagerly viewed the collection which has now grown to 72 palettes.
I'm sending you photos of the section featuring your father's poems and reproduced palette paintings. As usual, I'm sending the photos in batches as the files would most likely be heavy.
Just want to thank you again. The exhibit wouldn't have been complete without your help. :-)
p.s. I've also attached here a copy of the text that we put together to introduce your father's section. It may interest you to know that the emcee for the evening's program, Irene Rada, who's from the Cultural Center of the Philippines, even quoted from it -- how she believes that "Art is really poetry par excellence."
Went to see the Through the Palettes' Eye exhibition today with Cayee, Archie, Mico, Cara and Patrick. We, especially Cayee and I, had a truly wonderful, wonderful time.
You will not believe how she and I went on and on and on loudly reading Mr. Matar's poems. Cayee was wondering whether he really was thinking of his palette -- or a woman -- when he was writing those poems! She and I took turn dramatizing them -- all spontaneous, mind you!
The exhibition was held on the third floor of the CCP. As you enter, you see right away his works. An entire wall was dedicated for his work alone. How I wish we saw the originals! I just know they have to be a lot more stunning. I've visited his website and his paintings simply took my breath away!
For remarks, Cayee wrote, "I have not seen so much beauty in one room!" Mico wrote, "Ang galing," while Patrick wrote, "Ang ganda. Gusto kong magiging painter rin pag laki ko." Couldn't think so just wrote what I felt, "Just wonderful--they touched my soul; they lifted my spirit." We were given only a small line to write our remarks.